DRY’s Favorite Cookbooks for the Holidays

‘Tis the season for cooking and eating… and yes, enjoying family, friends, gifts and festivities, too. It’s no secret that here at DRY we LOVE to cook, so you may have guessed our team has a slight obsession with cookbooks. When we say we’re going to go home to crack open a good read, chances are it’s not a Hemmingway, Joyce or even a Rowling, but it’s more likely a Tiegen, Ray or Oliver. In the sharing spirit of the season, we want to offer up some of our team’s favorite volumes and recipes, written in their own words. From the classics to trendy and new cookbooks, we hope our holiday faves will inspire you to try something new.

Sharelle, CEO and Founder

Favorite Cookbook: Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking, Marcella Hazan

Favorite recipe(s): Gnocchi and Tomato Sauce

What you love about this book or recipe: “I went to Italy for the first time three years ago, and when there, I fell more in love with the food and all the traditions around it. I went on food tours and visited as many different types of food establishments as humanly possible during that week. When I returned, I went straight to the bookstore and bought two of Marcella Hazan’s cookbooks. Quick fun fact: My favorite activity on a Saturday afternoon is to make myself a special lunch and read cookbooks.

I shared the books with one of my daughters, and she was hooked. We decided to make a huge Italian feast for the family and the gnocchi and the tomato sauce were our favorite items that we cooked that day. My other daughter still claims it’s her very favorite meal we have ever made. The tomato sauce is so delicious and easy that I now make it at least 2-3 times a month.”

DRY Pairing: The fresh flavors in Cucumber DRY and Ginger DRY stand up perfectly to the sauce and gnocchi.


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BreeAnna, VP of Marketing

Favorite Cookbook: Nordstrom Friends and Family Cookbook

Favorite recipe(s): Tortilla Soup

What you love about this book or recipe: “Avocados. Fresh fried tortillas. Rich (but not too complicated) red broth. Need I say more? Ok, fine, I will. This tortilla soup is somehow delicious no matter what the season, meaning it’s good all the time and every time.”

DRY Pairing: The fruit in Rainier Cherry DRY or the fresh taste of Ginger DRY are great matches for this bold soup.

Pro Tip: The whole book is filled with fabulous twists on basics, and they serve several of these recipes in their cafes. So essentially, you can try before you buy!

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Brad, Region Manager

Favorite cookbook: The Book of Burger, Rachael Ray

Favorite recipe(s): Big Beef Burger with Crunchy Sour Cream Onion Rings and Smoke and Fireworks Bacon-Wrapped Chipotle Burgers

What you love about this book or recipe: “When my wife and I are looking to splurge a little (and not pay attention to calories), we always consult this book for some amazing burger recipes. We buy really nice buns, invest in great-quality meat and ingredients, and take extra care to make sure the burgers come out flawlessly. We spend time in the kitchen together, building the burgers as a team. Due to our work and travel schedules we rarely have the opportunity to cook together, which makes the time preparing these burgers especially memorable.”

DRY Pairing Recommendation: Both burgers are nice and hearty, so we recommend pairing with bold, Rhubarb DRY. You could also pair it with Blood Orange DRY to balance out any spiciness of the chipotle burger.

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Abby, Digital Marketing Specialist

Favorite Cookbook: Everyday Italian, Giada De Laurentiis

Favorite recipe(s): Gorgonzola and Porcini Mushroom Risotto

What you love about this book or recipe: “It’s no secret that I love all-things Giada, so it was a no-brainer for me to pick one of her cookbooks as my favorite. Everyday Italian has a ton of classic Italian recipes that are super easy to make. This risotto recipe is so approachable because it uses dried porcini mushrooms, which you can find almost anywhere. My husband and I enjoy making this dish when we want to have a date night at home because it reminds us of when we studied abroad in Florence together. We especially love it because we always have a glass of wine and some cheese while stirring the risotto as it is cooking. That’s a win-win if you ask me!”

DRY Pairing Recommendation: The earthiness of the porcini mushrooms and big flavors from the Gorgonzola cheese pair really well with the balanced flavors of Lavender DRY.

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Staci, National Channel Director

Favorite cookbook: Jamie at Home: Cook Your Way to the Good Life, Jamie Oliver

Favorite recipe(s): Superb Squash Soup with the Best Parmesan Croutons

What you love about this book or recipe: “This book was a present from a close friend, so that makes it special. I also really love it because the pictures are amazing. It makes you want to cook every recipe.”

DRY Pairing Recommendation: The piney and refined flavors of Juniper DRY are just what this hearty soup needs on the side.

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Ana, PacNW Region Manager and Kelly, Operations Coordinator

Favorite cookbook: Cravings, Chrissy Teigen

Favorite recipe(s): Cacio e Pepe (Ana) and Chicken Lettuce Wraps (Kelly)

What you love about this book or recipe:

“I make this every time my husband and/or I have been out of town for an extended period of time and we just want a big plate of comfort food and a nice drink to welcome us home.” – Ana

“The chicken lettuce wraps hit the spot when I want something light and healthy but so, so flavorful. I can’t stop scooping the chicken out of the pan :)” – Kelly

DRY Pairing Recommendations: Mix up DRY’s Red Sangria using Blood Orange DRY with the cacio e pepe for a refreshing wine-based cocktail. Try the lettuce wraps with Blood Orange or Ginger DRY so you can have a palate cleanser between the spicy bites.

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Ed, VP Sales

Favorite Cookbook: No cookbook, just a recipe my family loves!

Favorite Recipe(s): Butter Cookies

What you love about this book or recipe: “Butter cookie baking is a very special holiday-time tradition for our family. We make dozens and dozens every year to send to family and friends. This recipe was given to my wife, from her Mom, who passed away a from pancreatic cancer. This tradition brings back many great memories of her.”

DRY Pairing Recommendation: Vanilla Bean DRY is our favorite pairing with the cookies. It makes for a great treat without indulging too much.

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David, Sales Coordinator

Favorite Cookbook: Fifty Shades of Chicken, F.L. Fowler

Favorite recipe(s): Spatchcocked Chicken and Dripping Thighs

What you love about this cookbook or recipe: “Spatchcocking a chicken makes it cook evenly throughout the entire bird. After finding this recipe, I applied the cooking method to Thanksgiving dinner, so now every year we spatchcock our turkey and cook it on the grill!”

DRY pairing recommendations: Vanilla Bean DRY is the perfect accompaniment to the Spatchcocked chicken. I recommend pairing the dripping thighs (roasted chicken thighs with sweet-and-sour onion) with Blood Orange DRY. The bright and tangy flavor notes in Blood Orange DRY go perfectly with the chicken and sweet-and-sour flavors of the onions.

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Jenny, National DSD Director

Favorite Cookbook: Barefoot in Paris, Ina Garten

Favorite recipe(s): Warm Lentils along with the Filet of Beef with Gorgonzola Sauce

What you love about this book or recipe: “Before my husband and I had our daughter, we were involved with a couple of friends and co-workers in a monthly dinner club. It was our turn to host and I really wanted to pull out all the stops. (Side note: If you want to achieve that, look no further than Barefoot. Seriously. It’s about quality, not quantity, of ingredients and her recipes are simple to follow and always get a standing ovation from any dinner party I’ve ever thrown.) We lived in this cool apartment on Lake Union in Seattle and it had a phenomenal deck on the top overlooking the water. We secured the space on top of the deck for that evening and set up a great table. First and foremost, I wanted to impress my friends and co-workers. I had made steaks before, but I had never done a Filet of Beef. How is this even done? Well, it starts with a wad of cash and a good butcher, and therein lies the second thing: DON’T ruin it! You just spent your last paycheck purchasing it. Not only did I not ruin it, a couple of my guests literally starting crying when the seconds were gone and I caught another actually licking his plate. Needless to say, I make this very special dinner when I am entertaining important guests and it never fails me.”

DRY Pairing Recommendation: The floral notes in Lavender DRY complement the complexities of the flavors in the Warm Lentils. For the Filet of Beef, I recommend Cranberry DRY so the tartness of the cranberries could balance out the richness of the gorgonzola sauce.

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Melody, EVP of Sales

Favorite Cookbook: The Skinnytaste, Gina Homolka

Favorite recipes: Chicken Cordon Blue Meatballs and Lemon Roasted Asparagus, Easy Broccolini Flounder Bake and Mini Pavlovas with Fresh Fruit.

What you love about this book or recipe: “I love cooking with my family, my kids included. These recipes are wonderfully big on flavor and light on calories and relatively simple to execute so everyone can be included – even my five-year-old, Jake! My kids would say their favorite is the chicken cordon blue meatballs, but they both love the fish too, and who doesn’t love dessert?!”

DRY Pairings: Juniper DRY (or a DRY Martini) with the meatballs, Cucumber DRY with the flounder and Lavender DRY with champagne and a rosemary garnish for the pavlovas.

And there you have it. A whole host of books, recipes and pairings to try, all tested and recommended by the DRY team. Now we’d like to hear your favorites! We invite you to share them with us, along with the recipes and DRY Pairings.  Either post on social media using the hashtag #DRYSparkling or send us an email at info@drysoda.com. You just might be rewarded with some awesome DRY gear!

Cheers!